England's Raheem Sterling misses World Cup clash after break-in at family home

Chelsea forward leaves Qatar and absent from Round of 16 win against Senegal

Raheem Sterling during an England training session in Al Wakrah, Qatar, on December 3, 2022. PA
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

Raheem Sterling is heading home from England’s World Cup camp in Qatar after intruders broke into his house and stole jewellery and watches.

The Chelsea forward was left out of Gareth Southgate’s squad as they beat the African champions Senegal 3-0 on Sunday to set-up a quarter-final clash with France.

Sterling’s absence is understood to have followed a break-in at his house on Saturday evening, leaving the England international shaken and concerned about the well-being of his children.

It had initially been thought his family were present when armed intruders broke in.

But on Monday, Surrey Police said the family were out at the time.

In a statement, the force said: “We are currently investigating a report of a burglary at an address in Oxshott, Leatherhead.

“Police were contacted just before 9pm on Saturday December 3rd after the occupants of the property came home and discovered a number of items including jewellery and watches had been stolen.

“Inquiries to establish the circumstances are under way and the investigation is ongoing.

“No threat of violence was involved as the items were discovered stolen retrospectively. Inquiries into the circumstances are ongoing.”

When asked if he thought the 27-year-old would figure at the tournament from here, manager Southgate said on ITV: “We’ve got to wait and see.

“At the moment clearly the priority is for him to be with his family, and we’re going to support that and we’re going leave him to have as much time as he needs. He’s going home.”

He added: “I really don’t know (the likelihood of him returning) because at the moment it’s a situation that he needs time with his family and I don’t want to put him under any pressure with that.

England beat Senegal

“Sometimes football isn’t the most important thing and family should come first.”

Sterling has three children: his daughter, and eldest, Melody Rose, as well as two sons, Thiago and Thai.

Sterling has been a regular starter for England under Southgate, featuring in the last World Cup in Russia in 2018 and the run to the final of the Euro 2020 tournament.

Southgate said that he had spoken at length with Sterling earlier in the day.

"He is dealing with a family matter. I had quite a bit of time with him this morning but I have had to pass that on to other people to help him with that."

Updated: December 05, 2022, 11:02 AM